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Keep track of your progress after you quit smoking

Some people can find keeping track of certain parts of their efforts to quit smoking can be helpful. This could be your number of cravings or smoke free days.

Scientific research shows that regularly monitoring your cravings can actually help reduce them. It can also be useful to track your smoke-free days to remind you how well you are doing.

It's good to track any slip ups where you've smoked too. This can feel disappointing, but it's a good opportunity to learn from mistakes and plan to avoid them in the future.

Keeping track of cravings

For most people, resisting cravings are one of the hardest parts of giving up smoking. Keeping a record of cravings can help you quit.

It shows you if there are any particular times of the day or situations where they come up more often. For example, you might have strong cravings to smoke after dinner.

If you know this time of day is difficult, you can have an activity planned to distract you from your cravings.

You might also like to track the strength of your cravings too. Keeping track of their strength can show you if there are any changes. It can also show if there's anything that might help to bring your craving strength down.

Tracking your craving strength can also show you that cravings do get less strong over time. This is providing you don't smoke. It will give you some inspiration to keep going.

Keeping track of smoke-free days

This can be as simple as noting down every day you manage to stay smoke free. This information can give you motivation.

It reminds you how well you might be doing, and you can use it together with giving yourself rewards or goals. Find out more about incentives and rewards.

Keeping track of slip-ups can show you if there are any situations or times where you're more likely to smoke. You can then problem solve and prepare so they don't happen again.

You can find out more about how to problem solve and also how to manage slip-ups.

Smoking or cravings tracker diary

We've provided a 'smoking diary' for you to use to track your progress.

Save a copy of the stopping smoking diary (PDF) [98KB]

You can use it for as many weeks as you need. There's no right or wrong way to complete these diaries, as long as they are true to you.

We've also provided some questions you can use once you've filled in your diary or tracker. This will help you spot any patterns to your cravings or slip-ups:

  • Are there particular times of day I'm more likely to get cravings, stronger cravings or have a slip-up?
  • Is there anything that might be triggering these cravings or slip-ups?
  • Is there anything I can do to help reduce the number or strength of my cravings?
  • Is there a change in the strength of my cravings over the week or month?

Smoke Free app

The Smoke Free app uses the latest science to support people to stop smoking. It includes a tracking feature which you may find useful to use together with the information and advice we've provided. Get the Smoke Free app

What's next 

Get tips and techniques to help you keep up with the changes to your smoking. This should help you stay smoke free for life.

Having tackled your smoking, you may want to make changes to other areas of your health. Take a look at how we could help you.

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